Black History Month: George E. Edgecomb Justice Center in Tampa - WFLA News Channel 8

Black History Month: George E. Edgecomb Justice Center in Tampa

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George E. Edgecomb George E. Edgecomb
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

Thousands of people come to the George E. Edgecomb Justice Center every day. But the widow of the man the building is named after, Doretha Edgecomb, doesn't think people realize the important impact he made.

"I think people are coming for different reasons to courthouse, I dont think they spend a lot of time looking at who it was really named after," Edgecomb said.

The Honorable George E. Edgecomb had the distinction of being the first African-American county solicitor and he was invested as a county judge on August 13, 1973.

Edgecomb was a pivotal figure in Hillsborough County. He was a big brother for Big Brothers Big Sisters, a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, and was on the Urban League Board of Directors as well. And he did it all in a short time.

He died in 1976.

"He was only 33 when he died. And in the backdrop of the era in which he became a judge which was in 1973. So taking those things into consideration, this is a great tribute to his life and I always tell young people, I think the message I try to send to young people, no matter how long you live or how short you live, you can always make a difference," his widow said.

Ten years ago is when the 13th Judicial Circuit Court named the downtown Tampa building in his honor. A bust inside and a picture on the wall tell the story behind the man, behind the name. But for Allison Edgecomb, his daughter, it's far more than a story, it's an inspiration.

"It makes me realize, all dreams can come true. No matter what your background is, or where you come from, if you work hard, and you're prepared anything is possible," Allison said.

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